Ideological riders are a constant threat to the budget process.
Big business backers have been sticking up for their corporate special interests by by pushing to attach policy provisions that they can’t pass through regular order to the must-pass budget package.
And we’ve been sticking up for the public interest in-kind.
Right-wing lawmakers are holding the budget hostage and blaming everyone but themselves for the stalemate– refugees, students, Planned Parenthood, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to name just a few. A few examples of the policy riders being considered are those that would block money in politics reforms, obstruct regulations meant to prevent the next Wall Street crisis, and attack worker and environmental protections.
So after weeks of debate – including a brief bright spot when the bi-partisan budget framework that lifted the sequester spending caps was announced – we still don’t have a final budget omnibus package. And they’re still threatening a shutdown over these ideological riders.
As lawmakers continue to try to worm riders into the budget appropriations process, Public Citizen and nearly 200 coalition partners have come together to oppose riders in the final budget.
Below are several articles written by coalition partners that speak to the true human cost of just a handful of riders in the final budget deal, the real overarching cost is incalculable.
- Congress: Fund Our Government Without Clogging Our Lungs
Huffington Post: November 20, 2015
Stephanie Maddin, Earthjustice
- A Showdown Over Policy Riders Could Still Trigger a Shutdown
The Huffington Post: November 16, 2015
Gene Karpinski, League of Conservation Voters & Robert Weissman, Public Citizen
- Budget Shenanigans Put Clean Water Rules in Jeopardy
The Huffington Post, November 12, 2015
Chris Espinosa, Earthjustice
The Hill: November 11, 2015
Marty Hayden, Earthjustice
- Keep the Toxic Bitters Out of the Budget Cocktail
The Hill: November 4, 2015
Lisa Gilbert, Public Citizen
- Wall Street’s Sneak Attack
S. News & World Report: November 2, 2015
Jim Lardner, Americans for Financial Reform
- Federal Budget Held Hostage
Philadelphia Inquirer: October 23, 2015
Robert Shine, People for the American Way
- Shutdown Charade Hurts Science
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: October 23, 2015
Neal Lane & Andrew Rosenberg, Union of Concerned Scientists
- Who Benefits from Fewer Protections for Wildlife?
The Roanoke Times: September 20, 2015
Jamie Rappaport Clark, Defenders of Wildlife
These pieces are great, but lawmakers also need to hear from their constituents about their interests. Please sign the petition to demand that your representatives in Congress support a budget deal with no riders.
Keira Thompson is the online advocacy organizer for Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division.